Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Christmas Mercies

By the grace of God, we got through the first week of December. By the grace of God, we managed to enjoy our first week in December!




The first week in December this year followed directly after Thanksgiving. Often, there is a weekend between Thanksgiving and December, but this year, December started on Sunday, and there goes one weekend before Christmas. You might wonder why this is even important, but for some reason, there are so many things scheduled the first week of December, on top of the normal things scheduled for the first week of every month – you know, small things like bill paying and making sure your finances are in order πŸ™‚


So we had our normal first week of the month – Book Club, babysitting, exercise classes, bible study – AND. And we had a house guest, a very old friend, a friend from all the way back in Tunis, when we were all studying languages, our guest and my husband learning Arabic and me learning French. Our guest and I sang in the community choir together, and he was very much a part of our small expat family. Having him in our home was so easy, we came and went, fortunately at different times. On top of all this, we also had a couple of annual Christmas related events, social events, we had to attend. By the grace of God, it all went smoothly, and – this is the mercy – enjoyably. We weren’t stressed.


I was stressed a little yesterday. The last two days have been horrible for me, in terms of climate. You know, I like NO air conditioning, I like temperatures in the 60s and 70s (F) but the temperatures were almost 80 and HUMID. Bad enough I had to turn on our A/C last night so I could sleep, and feeling so grumpy. I really need to get the Christmas decorations up this weekend so I can get on with my December, enjoy the Christmas ambiance and not have to stress about getting things done. But how do you get Christmas decorations up when you are hot and sweaty, it just isn’t right.


Major mercy – when I woke up this morning, I was wrapped warmly in my quilts and . . . I wasn’t feeling hot or sweaty. As as matter of fact, overnight the temperatures had fallen into the 40’s! Woooo HOOOO, out came all the Christmas boxes and tubs; AdventureMan got busy putting up the lights, I pulled out the other things and we got busy. Around lunch time we had a wonderful lunch, and then went searching for more light; I hadn’t bought enough to cover the length of our porch. After four fruitless stops (the lights had to match or it was all for nothing) we came home empty handed and I checked online for where this brand was sold. It was Home Depot, the one store we hadn’t stopped at because I was so sure I hadn’t bought them there. Wooo HOOOO, one quick trip and we have all the lights we need and AdventureMan got them all up.


AdventureMan is more scrupulous than I am about some things. He . . . . read the instructions on the lights. Have you ever done that? Like where it talks about amps and resistance and fire warnings? LOL, I love a lot of lights, and will string lights on lights on lights. Somewhere in the dim recesses of my mind I sort of knew it might be dangerous, but AdventureMan takes those things seriously. The good thing is that we are still married, and much more safely wired than when I was doing it.


I can hear my son scoffing when I say that today was God’s mercy on me, but to him I say God makes it to rain on the righteous and the unrighteous, and as undeserving as I am, today he gave me exactly what I needed – a chilly, Christmas-decorating kind of day. Thanks be to God.


December 8, 2013 - Posted by | Advent, Arts & Handicrafts, Christmas, Cultural, Living Conditions, Relationships, Safety, Shopping


  1. Wow your setup looks BEAUTIFUL! I’m getting hungry and ready for a feast just looking at it πŸ˜€

    Comment by Razan | December 10, 2013 | Reply

  2. LOL, Razan, it IS beautiful, and what makes me laugh is how the beauty is made up of inexpensive things – white lights, made-in-China ornaments, a few things we’ve collected over the years . . . not expensive, but the impact when they come together is wonderful. AdventureMan walked outside to see what our lights looked like at night and stood there in wonder!

    I wish you were here to come over for the feast . . . lots of feasts! The great feast of friendship! I wish you would bring your family so we could all meet, and I wish you could come alone, so we could have one of our visits πŸ™‚ I miss you, habibti!

    Comment by intlxpatr | December 10, 2013 | Reply

  3. That would be amazing! One day inshalla inshala xxx

    Comment by Razan | December 10, 2013 | Reply

  4. Love your christmas tree, palm tree candles & small tree by the window.
    Come to Kuwait , it is so cold today 5 degree !! You will love the weather!
    I am having Christmas party for the stitch group, wish you were here.
    Miss you a lot .

    Comment by Hayfa Almughni | December 11, 2013 | Reply

    • I miss you, too, and I wish I could be there. I love Kuwait at this time of year! I remember how shocked you were at my bare legs! I wasn’t cold! And I remember going through the Mubarakiyya fish market in January, and it didn’t smell bad in the cold weather, and our friend took photos of everything, she missed fresh fish so much πŸ™‚

      Comment by intlxpatr | December 11, 2013 | Reply

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